The AM General HMMWV or ‘Humvee’ has been active in America’s military since 1985, and even though it’s served its country well in that time frame, it’s time to move on to something else.
As Popular Mechanics reports, the Pentagon’s Joint Light Tactical Vehicle program was tasked to deliver “a flexible vehicle that balances the payload, performance, and protection critical in the operating environments of today and tomorrow.” Their choice was the Oshkosh Defense’s Light Combat All-Terrain Vehicle or L-ATV, for short, which beat out offerings from Lockheed Martin and Humvee purveyor AM General.
Critical demands had to be met in order for Oshkosh to win the bid. When fighting in Iraq, soliders were faced with the constant threat of IEDs, with the bombs accounting for 60 percent of American casualties. After experiencing success with Oshkosh’s Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, the army requested a vehicle that was maneuverable like a heavily armored like an MRAP yet more maneuverable.
The L-ATV is much larger and taller than a Humvee, and will come in four- and two-passenger cab variations. It also weighs just 15,639 pounds and is powered by a GM Duramax 6.6-liter V8 turbo-diesel engine, attributes which helped make it the first military vehicle to finish the Baja 100 in 2010.
Oshkosh’s L-ATV will begin shipping to military units in 2018, with its service window lasting through to 2040. The deal nets Oshkosh $6.7 billion for a low rate initial production run, and another $30 billion through to 2024.